Missing the Message

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When did you find yourself “missing the message” because you were in a rush? How did it make you feel? What happens when you slow down so that you can take in what seems to be the smallest of moments? These missed messages can be God’s time with us if we allow him the opportunity.

God bless!

Katina

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It’s Your Calling

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Why are we so afraid to step into our calling? There are various reasons. However, when we see and feel the freedom that it brings, we will wonder why we ever resisted displaying and embracing that irresistible mission.

It’s your Calling

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It’s Your Calling, It’s Your Calling.

It’s God Sent.

Why are you stalling?

Your Life’s Traumas will not be wasted.

The end product cannot be hasted.

It’s your calling, It’s your calling.

Leave Egypt behind.

Forget its hauling.

Episode 29: The Power of God

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The Power of God Podcast Outline:

  • Dissection of Relationships and Our Brokenness
  • My Witness to the Power of God
  • Saul’s Witness to the Power of God
  • Podcast Transcript
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Welcome to Healing Our Brokenness Episode 29: The Power of God. Have you ever seen the Power of God in your life? Well, today I am going to give two examples of his power at work. First of all, let’s do some a little dissection.

Dissection of Relationships and Our Brokenness

Whether we are at church, work, or in our neighborhoods, it is important to cultivate relationships with people. Sometimes, in the process of doing this, people become jealous, or they turn on us for no reason. If there is a reason, it is one that doesn’t make sense to us.


However, since we are all broken, we all do things that are characteristic of our sin nature. In a few of these instances, there are times when the people who turn on us are toxic, and the best thing to do is to setup boundaries. In many cases, this may involve little to no contact at all. Prayer from a distance is the best way to go.

My Witness to the Power of God


When I was going through my divorce, my ex-husband’s behavior got so out of control and toxic, that I had to setup a boundary that he could not come back to our marital residence to visit the kids for some months. They could walk out to the car to go with him.

However, that was the extent of it. What led to this decision? His behavior was so out of control during one particular visit, that it cut through my soul and crushed my spirit. It was also during this time that my grandmother was dying in the hospital. I ended up having an emotional breakdown of sorts and was hanging on by a thread.

All correspondence was done via email for a while. What I didn’t find out until later from my son, is that he had decided he was going to come in anyway. However, as the Lord would have it, the first time that he attempted this, his car broke down. Every time that he decided that he wouldn’t follow the paperwork from the court for his financial obligations, his car would break down. My friend joked with me and said that she would never
cross me. I said, ” Why?” Her response was that once I started praying things happened.

Saul’s Witness to the Power of God


Saul became jealous of David because the women sang songs about how David had slain ten thousands and Saul had slain thousands. Saul’s anger got so out of control, that he decided that he would kill David. He sent his messengers ahead of him to find out his exact location.


As God would have it, his messengers ended up prophesying. They entered the place where Samuel and his prophets were praying and prophesying, and God caused this to happen to them. Saul sent messengers out two more times. The same thing happened. Finally, he went himself, and God caused him to be filled with the prophesying spirit. This was done long enough for David to escape.


When David had fled and made his escape, he went to Samuel at Ramah and told him all that Saul had done to him. Then he and Samuel went to Naioth and stayed there. Word came to Saul: “David is in Naioth at Ramah”; so he sent men to capture him. But when they saw a group of prophets prophesying, with Samuel standing there as their leader, the Spirit of God came on Saul’s men, and they also prophesied. Saul was told about it, and he sent more men, and they prophesied too. Saul sent men a third time, and they also prophesied. Finally, he himself left for Ramah and went to the great cistern at Seku. And he asked, “Where are Samuel and David?”

“Over in Naioth at Ramah,” they said.
So Saul went to Naioth at Ramah. But the Spirit of God came even on him, and he walked along prophesying until he came to Naioth. He stripped off his garments, and he too prophesied in Samuel’s presence. He lay naked all that day and all that night. This is why people say, “Is Saul also among the prophets?”


Talk about the power of God moving! When we do the praying, God does the acting.

Prayer:


Dear God,

We thank you for your grace. Thank you for having our backs when we are literally up against the wall from our enemies. Please help us to remember to set boundaries and pray when we are surrounded by toxic people.

In your name,
Amen

Episode 28: Bad Advice

Episode 19: Anxiety!

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Anxiety is something that we will all face in life. The causes of anxiety and the solutions for dealing with this common problem will vary from person to person. Listen in to Episode 19 as I discuss this topic.

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Episode 19: Podcast Outline

  • Introduction
  • Normal Anxiety
  • Clinical Anxiety
  • Trying to be Sovereign Anxiety
  • Self-Inflicted Anxiety
  • Trauma-Induced
  • David on Anxiety
  • Solutions for Anxiety

Good morning!  Welcome to Valley of Grace’s Healing Our Brokenness podcast.  Today, you are listening to Episode 19: Anxiety! 

Introduction

Picture this scene:  I was in 7th grade, and at the time, I enjoyed competing in oratorical contests for fun.  However, because my mother was a single parent, and had to work, she was never able to come to see me compete.  I should have been grateful that she was working.  However, I got caught up on her being there.  She finally decided to come.  However, she forgot to forewarn me.  I was on the stage, and she waved to show me that she was there, and my mind went blank after the first two lines.  I could hear my words trembling, and feel my whole body shaking intensely.  She hadn’t done anything wrong, but my lack of preparedness for her coming totally threw me for a loop.

Normal Anxiety

When we hear the word anxiety, all kinds of thoughts come to mind.  Anxiety is normal in certain cases.  For example, recently I was waiting for the test results from a mammogram, and as I was listening to the person on the phone, I became anxious as I proposed what her words would be and how I would react to them.  Anxiety can sneak upon us as we get ready to take a quiz, and it can cause us to forget everything that we were going to say. 

Hereditary Anxiety

Anxiety can be debilitating.  This type can often be hereditary and would fall under the column of anxiety disorder.  That means that if our grandparents and parents have suffered from anxiety disorder, then it is a high chance that we could be dealing with the same issue.  When we suffer from this kind of anxiety, it is something that we had no control over. 

Trying to be Sovereign Anxiety

There is, however, another kind of anxiety that I am going to discuss.  This type of anxiety is from the things that we place on ourselves.  Examples of this is trying to fix problems that we don’t have control over.  We try to control our adult children and the mistakes that they make in their lives. There is a desire to control whether or not people will accept or reject our uniqueness. 

We try to control whether the job that we have had for over 15 years will be the job that we retire from. Do you control the discipline that God gives to a family or friend in regard to their sin, and in the process, we began to enable the individual?  When we try so hard to control, it only makes us more out of control.  This eagerness to control creates an addiction within itself.  This is what the devil doesn’t tell us.  We don’t know until it’s too late.

Self-Inflicted Anxiety

Another type of anxiety that we place on ourselves is that of making changes for the sake of coming out of vicious cycles.  For example:  Stacy notices that she has an anxiety attack every morning in regard to getting out the door and getting to work.  Reasoning:  Every morning Stacy stays in bed until 30 minutes before it’s time to leave to go to work.  She has to rush to put makeup on, get her breakfast, and pack her lunch.  Stacy knows what is behind this problem, but she fails to make the changes.  Stacy is self-sabotaging.

Scheduling is another type of self-inflicted anxiety.  This is the area that I am guilty of, and starting to make progress in.  We pile as much as we can into a given day.  The more things we keep adding to that list, the more things will be added to our list of anxiety about.  The first thing that we don’t consider is exactly how long it will take to get each thing done.  There are only so many hours in the day. 

If we work outside the home, those hours are shortened.  Unless we are God, there is no way that we can get all those things done, but we try.  Sometimes it is possible to get those things done, but we have used this time up on social media, or doing a little bit too much relaxing, only to start the vicious cycle all about again.

Trauma-Induced Anxiety

The last type of anxiety that I would like to discuss is that of trauma-induced anxiety.  Unfortunately, this kind is one that I am very familiar with.  One kind of trauma anxiety is created from having to be in hypervigilant mode all the time.  The other part of trauma anxiety that I have noticed for myself is that I might have a flashback or a trigger of something. 

Then, what happens is that my mind may start to think about the details and feelings that this event caused.  I push the thought away, thinking that maybe it is unimportant, only to realize later when it resurfaces, and continues to occupy my emotional and mental space, that it is something that I need to deal with.  However, since trauma wants to be in control, it will cause you to start self-protecting, and then rationalizing why you shouldn’t talk about this thing. 

You think you’ve somehow outsmarted trauma, but it outsmarts you because when this event keeps coming up, it usually causes anxiety to go from 0 to 1000 in your body, while the flashbacks are occurring, and what you don’t realize is that avoidance of discussion of this event is keeping the physical energy in your body, and delaying the healing at the same time. 

I learned this the hard way when I tried avoiding talking about seeing my father abuse my mother in our apartment as a kid.  I kept delaying and delaying, scratching off on my therapy notes, and saying, “Nope, not this week!”  Weeks turned into months, and then finally when I couldn’t take it any longer and started feeling the impulse of swinging and punching at its peak, I did the best thing that I could do.  I talked about it with my therapist.  It got worse before it got better.

Now, when those feelings come up, I pretend like I am kickboxing in order to release the energy from my body.  Before discussing this event with my therapist, I would zone into worship music to calm the impulses.  What I didn’t realize is that the energy needs to leave your body.

We ask God to help us with all kinds of things.  However, we forget to ask him to help us with anxiety, and to get to the root.  In Psalms 139 David reminds us about how God knows everything.  We can’t hide anything from him.  His presence follows us.

Psalm 139 Amplified Bible (AMP)

God’s Omnipresence and Omniscience.

To the Chief Musician. A Psalm of David.

139 O Lord, you have searched me [thoroughly] and have known me.

You know when I sit down and when I rise up [my entire life, everything I do];
You understand my thought from afar.

You scrutinize my path and my lying down,
And You are intimately acquainted with all my ways.

Even before there is a word on my tongue [still unspoken],
Behold, O Lord, You know it all.

You have enclosed me behind and before,
And [You have] placed Your hand upon me.

Such [infinite] knowledge is too wonderful for me;
It is too high [above me], I cannot reach it.


Where can I go from Your Spirit?
Or where can I flee from Your presence?

If I ascend to heaven, You are there;
If I make my bed in Sheol (the nether world, the place of the dead), behold, You are there.

If I take the wings of the dawn,
If I dwell in the remotest part of the sea,
10 
Even there Your hand will lead me,
And Your right hand will take hold of me.
11 
If I say, “Surely the darkness will cover me,
And the night will be the only light around me,”
12 
Even the darkness is not dark to You and conceals nothing from You,
But the night shines as bright as the day;
Darkness and light are alike to You.

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13 
For You formed my innermost parts;
You knit me [together] in my mother’s womb.
14 
I will give thanks and praise to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Wonderful are Your works,
And my soul knows it very well.
15 
My frame was not hidden from You,
When I was being formed in secret,
And intricately and skillfully formed [as if embroidered with many colors] in the depths of the earth.
16 
Your eyes have seen my unformed substance;
And in Your book were all written
The days that were appointed for me,
When as yet there was not one of them [even taking shape].

17 
How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God!
How vast is the sum of them!
18 
If I could count them, they would outnumber the sand.
When I awake, I am still with You.

19 
[a]O that You would kill the wicked, O God;
Go away from me, therefore, men of bloodshed.
20 
For they speak against You wickedly,
Your enemies take Your name in vain.
21 
Do I not hate those who hate You, O Lord?
And do I not loathe those who rise up against You?
22 
I hate them with perfect and utmost hatred;
They have become my enemies.

23 
Search me [thoroughly], O God, and know my heart;
Test me and know my anxious thoughts;
24 
And see if there is any wicked or hurtful way in me,
And lead me in the everlasting way.

What are some helpful ways to reduce anxiety?

  • Taking a deep breath in and out
  • Meditating on worship music
  • Prayer
  • Exercise
  • Therapy
  • Sometimes medicine, along with everything lifted above.

I pray that you have heard something here today that has been helpful.

God bless!

For last podcast episode, click here.

Episode 14: Broken Pieces Introduction

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Background on Broken Pieces Introduction

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The book Broken Pieces was released a few days ago. The poem that I wrote, which is also included in the book, can be found here. In this episode, we are dissecting the reason for the name, the chapters, and the overarching theme of the book. The introduction of the book will be read to help give listeners insight into wh
Broken Pieces is really about. Does the issues resonate with them? And if so, how to seek ways for God to glue these pieces back together.

Broken Pieces Introduction Podcast Outline

Introduction of the Book Chapters

  • Introduction
  • Broken Identity
  • Broken Thinking
  • Broken Approval
  • Broken Dreams
  • Broken Faith
  • Broken Judgment
  • Broken Shame
  • Broken Comparison
  • Broken Conflict
  • Broken Relationships
  • Broken Forgiveness
  • Broken Healing

Reading of the Introduction

Bible Verse to Focus On:

John 10:10

King James Bible
The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

Boundaries

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The last poem that I wrote was entitled “Inner Circle”, and it deals with the conflict of deciding who to allow in your inner circle. Today’s poem is entitled Boundaries. It can be difficult to implement boundaries, but when you do, the payoff is rewarding. As with anything, the first step is always the hardest. God bless!

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Boundaries

Boundaries. Boundaries.

It’s where you end and I begin.

Boundaries. Boundaries.

Leave them out, it becomes sin.

Boundaries, Boundaries.

I respect you. You respect me.

Boundaries. Boundaries.

When we leave them out, our rights will flee.

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Bible Verses to Meditate On:

2 Corinthians 6:14

Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness?

Proverbs 25:17

Let your foot be seldom in your neighbor’s house, lest he have his fill of you and hate you.

Broken Pieces

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The last poem that I wrote was entitled “Faith Without Works”. You can find that poem here. Today’s poem, Broken Pieces, deals with the emotional process of deciding to enter the door of healing: the closed door represents survival mode, and open the opened door represents the door of thriving.

Broken Pieces

Broken Pieces, Broken Pieces

Yes, it’s what you’ve settled for.

There’s no thriving, just surviving.

Door of Healing gives you more.

Door of Healing, Door of Healing.

If I open, what is there?

There is Jesus.

In the fire.

And your pain.

So You’re Aware.

You’ll press in.

You will hurt.

Oh, but then you’ll go so far.

Just keep pressing.

It’s the lesson.

Set the bar.

Now it’s your blessing.

Episode 13: Grace Aspect of Living With and Healing from Trauma

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Episode 13: Grace Aspect of Living With and Healing from Trauma
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Our last podcast, Lost in the Woods of Trauma, dealt with the process of going from having the trauma identity to reign, to have our identity in Christ to take over. This week’s episode: Grace Aspect of Living With and Healing from Trauma, shares about the embarrassing moments that we all have when we live with and heal from trauma on a daily basis, even when we have come a long way with our healing. It also handles how to see these moments as God sees them. Click to listen!

Podcast Outline

Traumatic Childhood Events

My Traumatic Childhood Event

My Eye Doctor Visit

Grace Aspect: My Resolve

Grace Aspect: Bible Verses for Meditation

For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who was tempted in every way that we are, yet was without sin.  Let us therefore approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy, and find grace to help us in our time of need.


Hebrews 4: 15-16

Digestion Aspect: Living With and Healing from Trauma on a Daily Basis

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In our Living With and Healing from Trauma on a Daily Basis Series, I dissect issues and symptoms of PTSD/trauma. This is in hopes of letting people know that they are not alone, as well as giving people the freedom to comment, and talk about how PTSD/trauma has affected their lives in these areas. The last post in the Living With and Healing from Trauma on a Daily Basis Series was one dealing with the Holiday Aspect of trauma. You can find that post here. Today’s post will focus on the Digestion Aspect.

One surprising revelation for me was realizing that PTSD/trauma actually affects your digestion. I stumbled upon this realization in June of 2014, a couple of months after getting divorced. There are three things that I noticed when it comes to trauma and digestion:

Trauma and grief will come out in the form of regurgitation.

I am not trying to sound gross here, so please bear with me. Due to complications with my ex-husband’s health, as well as the fact that I had stuffed my emotions for so long, my grief was delayed. Grieving my divorce, and all the events surrounding it, were delayed. Alleviating some of the symptoms that I was experiencing seemed downright frightening because of stuffing for so long.

This caused me to be in a vicious cycle of stuffing and feeling like my face and chest was going to explode, with very little relief. Trauma is in the tissues, and so I discovered, along with reading information on my own, that movement, grief, and massaging helped to release it. The problem came into play when I finally felt like I could release the trauma. However, the underlying feeling was that if I started crying, there would be no bottoming out. Subconsciously, I knew it was going to be a bad release.

Instead of my system waiting any longer, it released the trauma and grief in the form of regurgitation. Initially, I thought that it was just that maybe something upset my stomach. However, after four rounds of this, and feeling grief in between each round, I knew that wasn’t the case at all. It didn’t take long to put two and two together.

I felt very vulnerable, and my son kept asking me, “What did you eat?” I told him that it had nothing to do with the food. It was physiological.

Trauma will cause your system to get confused about hunger and fullness.

Another weird discovery that I made is that every now and then, stored trauma and unreleased grief will make your system confused as far as satiety is concerned. There are times when I have felt like I could keep eating forever. Then, there are other times that I feel hungry, and then attempt to eat, but will all of a sudden feel full.

Lastly, there are times when I can literally feel my emotions trapped in my midsection, causing my body to try to figure out whether it is satisfied, or it needs more food. It is the weirdest thing. It doesn’t happen as much anymore. However, when it happens, it can be very frustrating.

When doing research, one of the explanations that I found is that because of PTSD/trauma, at times, the blood that should flow into the stomach, moves away from it, going to other areas like the arms.

Trauma will cause you to become hypersensitive to certain foods, causing severe panic attacks when consumed in normal portions.

The last issue that I would like to discuss is how trauma causes hypersensitivity to foods. These foods vary from person to person. For me, it was sugar. I first discovered this when I decided to eat a glazed donut in 2015.

Within five minutes, a severe panic attack came on, I felt like I was going to hit the roof. The only thing that would help my system to calm down was drinking an excess amount of water, and then deep breathing, and a lot of prayer. Taking multivitamins has helped , but it is still not the same.

My system has improved a little. However, it can’t handle what it once was able to. Sometimes, I get frustrated with this fact. It is what it is. I have learned to accept the fact that a few moments of pleasure for an hour or more of panic just isn’t worth it.

How has PTSD/trauma affected your digestion? What are some of the ways that you use to cope with it?

God bless,

Katina

Why I Write

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The last poem that I wrote was entitled, “Gratitude, Gratitude”, and it can be found here. Today’s poem takes you on a winding adventure of why I have chosen to write. Please feel free to send in your comments below on why it is that you have chosen the path of writing.

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Why I Write

I write from the heart.

No, it’s not just a part.

It’s the pain and the struggles.

It’s the drama and the tuggles.

The laughter and the cries.

The births and the byes.

The ins and the outs.

The moments filled with doubt.

The pushing past surviving.

The greeting of the thriving.

The heartaches and the pain.

The neverending rain.

The beauty and the ashes.

The life that’s filled with dashes.

Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.


Proverbs 29:18 King James Version (KJV)